for LoRa and IoT communications

IRNAS Drone Mapping

We have developed an automated drone RF mapping solution!
IoT Drone Mapping

IoT low-power long range networks have become widespread and very useful in applications ranging from outdoor agricultural and nature observation systems to indoor manufacturing, storage and health and safety applications. The common problem of all these deployments is being unable to clearly map and understand the radio coverage in more complex situations as well as to optimize it for cost effective deployments at scale. We have developed an automated drone RF mapping solution, enabling our customers and ourselves to evaluate the performance of their gateway, exactly determine the coverage, understand the effect of the environment on signal coverage as well as rapidly test potential gateway locations prior to prematurely investing in infrastructure and map the radio coverage over large areas and urban environments alike.

Key Benefits of IRNAS IoT Drone Mapping

Optimized gateway position to minimize node power consumption and on-site maintenance.
Increasing reliability of the network.
Decreasing the duration of the sensor network roll-out.
Gateway antenna pattern measurement for optimization of geo-location algorithms.
Understanding LoRaWAN public infrastructure coverage in a given area.

Interested in IoT Drone Mapping?​

Contact us with your idea and let’s work together to make it a reality!
IRNAS IoT Drone Mapping Offer
Our offer includes drone mapping technology and expertise:

Development of Drone mapping technology:
– open source path generation tools,
– open source datapoint visualisation and processing,
– advanced analysis as a service.
Drone mapping attachment sales.
Decreasing the duration of the sensor network roll-out.
Training of drone operators for RF mapping.
Analysis of drone mapping results as a service:
– 3D antenna pattern analysis,
– gateway positioning optimization consultancy,
– data generation for straightforward import into radio planning solutions.

Optimising LoRa gateway position

Gateways in LoRa and LoraWAN networks are the interface between a large area with a significant number of nodes and the cloud. There are a number of scenarios for network coverage provisioning, ranging from public gateway infrastructure to dedicated gateways for specific project and private networks for a particular deployment or a scale deployment of pico gateways. The common factor when rolling out a reliable network is understanding the existing coverage in a given area and determining what coverage has been achieved once gateways have been deployed.

Consider the following scenarios:

No gateways in the area

Our off-grid edge-computing IoT devices are capable of processing sensor information, video and images to create compact answers, rapid responses to changes in environment and are low bandwidth to be suitable for communication at long distances via LoraWAN, satellite modems and other long-range connections from any location in the world. Implementing the latest single-board computers from Raspberry Pi and combining them with well proven open-source processing packages we implement solutions ranging from visually monitoring an analogue meter that cannot be replaced in a factory basement to observing penguin migrations in Antarctica.

Large-area coverage roll-out

Rrequiring a deployment of multiple gateways. To optimize their placement, avoid coverage blind spots due to land cover and increase the battery life of nodes, the coverage of gateways during deployment can be measured with drone mapping and adjusted in the process to create best coverage with minimal effort and equipment.

Partial public network coverage

Where some nodes will be able to connect to existing infrastructure of which coverage may be unknown and some nodes will have no connectivity. With drone mapping the existing coverage in areas of interest can be rapidly determined, blinds spots identified and the locations of additional gateways determined.

Extending the battery life of node devices
The low power nature of LoRaWAN devices enables their battery only operation for a number of years, however it is significantly depending on the signal quality and spreading-factor required to send the information. For example the lower SF7 rate will transmit the message in about 60 ms, while the higher SF12 will require about 1700 ms for the same message, using 28 times more power when transmitting and the operation on a single charge will be that many times shorter, increasing the operating costs of the devices significantly. For example for 1000 devices with battery operation in a given area, if some operate at SF12, they will need to be replaced annually, creating significant costs which can be minimized by using the drone mapping to find optimal gateway positions. Should 30% of devices in the given example require replacing annually, we project the servicing cost in the range of 60.000 EUR annually for the lifespan of devices. Drone mapping and optimization costs are significantly lower than annual cost of servicing.
Easy deployment

Drone mapping and testing is of significant help to the field deployment team and while planning the network. One can easily place a mobile gateway, evaluate its coverage and test how high it has to be mounted to achieve desired connectivity from test nodes. Check if trees, forrest and other obstacles will limit the performance.

Advanced radio coverage mapping by real-world antenna radiation pattern characterization

Drone mapping uniquely empowers the network operator to understand the radiation pattern of the antenna measured in real-world and thus this information can be used as an input to radio coverage planning software to produce more accurate coverage patterns and other parameters, such as RSSI based geolocation.

Find out more about IoT drone mapping in the video of a talk that we had at The Things Network conference.

Have a project in mind?

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